|Candles on the ocean under the full moon, at Matsushima's Toronagashi Festival|
My friend and I dressed up in yukata, light cotton kimono, and took the train out to Matshushima. We made it just in time to catch the last boat of the evening, which takes people out amongst the candles in the ocean so that everyone can set theirs adrift as well. Matsushima is always a scenic area, but it looked especially beautiful all lit up with festival lanterns and floating candles.
In August, Matsushima usually has a big fireworks festival. I've never gone to it, since I've heard that the crowds are terrible. But this year, thanks to the earthquake, it was canceled. So everyone was really surprised when, right after our boat left the dock, giant fireworks started going off overhead. We went really close to the island where they were setting them off, so it was the best view I've ever had of a fireworks show. And since it was a surprise, there were no big crowds- we got really lucky!
|Ninja fireworks, they just exploded out of nowhere!|
After the fireworks, the other passengers on the boat set out their candles to join the hundreds of others already floating on the waves. Then we headed back to land. There was a small area set up with booths for food, and earlier in the night there was traditional music and dance performances. We had some greasy festival food for dinner- okonomiyaki and yakitori (a kind of seafood and veggie pancake and grilled chicken on a stick, respectively.)
|Mmm, greasy food..|
|See you next year, ancestors!|